United Nations/Trusteeship Council

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When the United Nations Charter was signed in 1945, all Member States agreed to set up the International Trusteeship System, which called for the international supervision for 11 Non-Self-Governing Territories administered by seven Member States. A trusteeship is a situation in which one administers a Trust Territory.

The Charter states that "the membership of the Trusteeship Council must reflect a balance between members that administer Trust Territories and members that do not...". For this reason, the size of the Trusteeship Council varies. Over time, the number of Trust Territories has decreased, paralleling with the decreasing size of administering countries. The five veto power nations administer or have administered Trust Territories in the past. By 1985, few Territories were under Trust control, such as the Pacific Islands, under Trust jurisdiction of the United States of America.

Although China is part of the Trusteeship Council, it voluntarily chooses not to intervene in the Council's activities.

Control and Controlled[edit]

The Trusteeship Council is like other organs of the UN but is different in some senses. The Council is actually under the jurisdiction of the General Assembly, and carries out the controlled powers of the UN regarding Trust Territories and current issues regarding them. While the Trusteeship Council assumes administration, it is the Security Council that is actually responsible for carrying out the plans of the Trusteeship Council.

Community Action of the Council[edit]

Periodically, the Trusteeship Council will provide for formal visiting of Trust Territories. The Council takes action based on adhering to various Trusteeship Agreements and ensures that these Agreements are not treated loosely nor neglected by Member States.

Each member of the Trusteeship Council shall have one vote and decisions of the Trusteeship Council shall be made by a majority of the members present and voting.

The Council: When?[edit]

The Trusteeship Council meets annually for regular sessions. However, as of 2002, the Trusteeship Council no longer meets, but has the ability to be "revived" in the event that an issue regarding Trust Territories arises.

The U.N. Charter does not specify whether or not the Trusteeship Council may hold special emergency sessions like the General Assembly or Security Council can. The Council is not a UN body that may issue an resolution that calls for an immediate solution to a problem; (as the Charter says in Article 33, "The Security Council shall, when it deems necessary, call upon the parties [the current Members of the Security Council] to settle..." ).